John O. Brennan
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|John O. Brennan|
|Director of the Central Intelligence Agency|
March 8, 2013
|Preceded by||Michael Morell (Acting)|
|Succeeded by||Mike Pompeo (Nominee)|
|United States Homeland Security Advisor|
January 20, 2009 – March 8, 2013
|Preceded by||Ken Wainstein|
|Succeeded by||Lisa Monaco|
|Director of the National Counterterrorism Center|
August 27, 2004 – August 1, 2005
|President||George W. Bush|
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||John Redd|
|Born||John Owen Brennan|
(1955-09-22) September 22, 1955
Jersey City, New Jersey, U.S.
|Alma mater||Fordham University (BA)|
University of Texas, Austin (MA)
Brennan's 25 years with the CIA included work as a Near East and South Asia analyst, as station chief in Saudi Arabia, and as director of the National Counterterrorism Center. After leaving government service in 2005, Brennan became CEO of The Analysis Corporation, a security consulting business, and served as chairman of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance, an association of intelligence professionals.
President Barack Obama nominated Brennan as his next director of the CIA on January 7, 2013. The ACLU called for the Senate not to proceed with the appointment until it confirms that "all of his conduct was within the law" at the CIA and White House. John Brennan was approved by the Senate Intelligence Committee on March 5, 2013 to succeed David Petraeus as the Director of the CIA by a vote of 12 to 3.
His term as CIA Director coincided with revelations that the U.S. government conducted massive levels of global surveillance, that the CIA had hacked into the computers of U.S. Senate employees, and the release of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture.
Early life and educationBrennan, the son of Irish immigrants from Roscommon, was raised in North Bergen, New Jersey. He attended the Immaculate Heart of Mary Elementary School, and graduated from Saint Joseph of the Palisades High School in West New York, New Jersey before enrolling at Fordham University in New York City.
While riding a bus to class at Fordham, he saw an ad in The New York Times that said the CIA was recruiting, and he felt a CIA career would be a good match for his "wanderlust" and his desire to do public service. His studies included a junior year abroad learning Arabic and taking Middle Eastern studies courses at the American University in Cairo. In 1976, he voted for Communist Party USA candidate Gus Hall in the presidential election; he later said that he viewed it as a way "of signaling my unhappiness with the system, and the need for change."
He received a B.A. in political science from Fordham in 1977. He then attended the University of Texas at Austin, receiving a Master of Arts in government with a concentration in Middle Eastern studies in 1980. He speaks Arabic fluently.
Brennan is married to Kathy Pokluda Brennan, with whom he has had one son and two daughters